JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A team of aviation investigators is now working in a remote, mountainous site in southeast Alaska to determine what caused the crash of a sightseeing plane that killed eight cruise ship passengers and the aircraft’s pilot.
The turboprop floatplane went down Thursday. The excursion was sold through the cruise company Holland America.
Seven investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board made it to the crash site on Saturday morning and are scouring for clues.
An NTSB official says the plane was on its way back from the Misty Fjords National Monument, a wilderness area of lakes, snowcapped peaks and glacial valleys. The terrain where the plane crashed is steep, mountainous, and often sees strong winds and rain.
The official says the airplane’s wings and tail broke off during impact, but the fuselage was largely intact. The plane crashed on a cliff, 800 feet above Ella Lake in steep, muddy terrain.